Whitelines’ Deputy Editor reviews the 2013-14 K2 Happy Hour at the UK Boardtest in Kaunertal.
K2 HAPPY HOUR – TECH SPEC
SHAPE: True Twin
K2 HAPPY HOUR – WHITELINES 100 SNOWBOARD BUYERS’ GUIDE REVIEW
K2 have been building snowboards since the late 80s and alongside their sister company Ride are now one of the biggest brands in the world. They have a focus on backcountry that comes from both their heritage as a freeride ski maker and the location of their headquarters near the powder mecca of Mount Baker, but they also make some damn fine freestyle boards. The angular Happy Hour, ridden by skinny-trousered, black metal-loving Norwegian jibber Danny Larsen, is a case in point (no pun intended).
This board has been turning heads since it was first introduced back in 2010. And while the unusual shape garnered a lot of the initial attention, it’s the board’s performance that has gone on to win it acclaim from both ordinary riders and industry experts in the years since. The board is designed primarily for freestyle, but not necessarily park-based freestyle. A relatively stiff flexing core has been enhanced by a strip of carbon down the centre that K2 call an ‘ollie bar’. It’s cambered in shape, giving it a natural springiness that helps this board pop high and hard.
This year K2 have switched the flat base for what they call a ‘lifted baseline’ profile – essentially a flat profile that’s raised slightly off the snow, giving it some of the springiness of traditional camber. There’s also a high quality 4000-grade sintered base which makes the Happy Hour quick. We were certainly impressed by its straightline speed. It felt stable and comfortable on medium-to-large sized kickers too. Although beginners might struggle with the mid-stiff flex, intermediate and advanced freestylers will love it. As one of our testers said: “This doesn’t just give you an hour of happiness, it gives you the whole damn day!”
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